Baseball's Golden Age: The Photographs of Charles M. Conlon

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9780810981775: Baseball's Golden Age: The Photographs of Charles M. Conlon
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During the golden age of baseball, from 1904 to 1942, Charles M. Conlon took thousands of pictures of the heroes of the day: Home Run Baker, Ty Cobb, Christy Mathewson, Babe Ruth, Joe DiMaggio, Ted Williams, and many others. This volume offers the first comprehensive look at Conlon's remarkable legacy and features lively anecdotal captions packed with evocative stories and trivia. 205 photos. 6-page gatefold.

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Review:

He was called "The Baseball Photographer," the man who put his camera away after the World Series and didn't unpack it again until Opening Day, but Conlon's work is not that simple. Though he had no artistic pretense, his images are certainly works of art, and if his subject, on the surface, was the "National Pastime," his focus was really on capturing depth of character; his characters just happened to be ballplayers. Conlon's stark, vivid, black-and-white photographs caught an era that spanned the turn of the century to the second World War, and some of the moments he froze remain breathtakingly stunning: the sad eyes of Babe Ruth in deep close-up, the hope in the smile of a rookie Lou Gehrig, the dignity of Walter Johnson, the impishness of Casey Stengel, the burdens of Honus Wagner, the arrogance of Nap Lajoie and Tris Speaker, and the concentration of Christy Mathewson. This is a magnificent collection, one capable of superimposing the past onto the present; it is visually arresting--and alluring--like the game itself. --Jeff Silverman

About the Author:

Neal McCabe is a baseball historian and the author, who edited and co-produced the audio version of The Glory of Their Times, the classic 1966 oral history of baseball by Lawrence S. Ritter. McCabe has also adapted The Glory of Their Times for the stage. His lifelong fascination with baseball history was sparked in childhood by the hypnotic story-telling of Dodger announcer Vin Scully. 

Constance McCabe is the head of the Photograph Conservation Department at the National Gallery of Art. She can trace her fascination with old photographs to her childhood, when she would sit for hours as her grandmother showed her the family snapshots. This book is the first from the brother-sister team, showcasing Constance's efforts in the darkroom and Neal's writing and researching.

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